Dearly beloved,

It was gorgeous day here in Davis. The first really pretty summer day we've had - everyone in shorts, and a nice breeze. Tess and I went to our ballet class, although I didn't do the whole class - one of the nastier side effects of taxol drugs is that they make your joints ache, and that one has been hitting me pretty hard lately.

I came home, and wertperch and I had talked about going to the farmer's market, but I wanted to just sit and rest, and putter around for a bit. So we had a cup of tea, and he went merrily off in his kilt, and I puttered. You know wertperch gets chatted up a lot just because of the accent; add a utilikilt in, and it takes him four hours to go to the co-op. Everyone from the teenagers to little old ladies with blue hair want to have a gossip with him, and eye his legs.

Meanwhile, I was canning asparagus. We'd had five pounds of leftovers from Fiddlers, and I was curious to try a recipe I ran across. I invented the pickling spice, and it smelled heavenly. It ended up being four quart jars, which doesn't look like much (I always want to at least fill the canner, so I require seven jar recipes) but I suspect once we open one it'll last a while. One of my dancer friends made me a bloody mary a while ago with some homemade tomato juice from last summer, and it was deee-lish. That's how we got inspired to do the asparagus. You know that fresh tomato taste makes canning so worth it. One of the weirder spices I put into the pickling spice was cardomom, so there's a chance they will be awful. I've already made chutney and three kinds of marmalade this spring, so I'm not very sentimental about stuff I don't like. I dump it down the disposal.

Then wertperch came home. I went off to sit by the swimming pool at a friend's house for a bit, and he went to the theatre to see if the ballet crew needed help. The imp's performances are next weekend, and we just moved into the theatre yesterday. wertperch has been needing some guy time, and a couple of the adults who dance with me are lots of fun, so I was enouraging him to go and paint and pound nails.

The imp and the tumbler and went off to a birthday party. Sixth grade is now apparently the age where they switch from all girl parties to mixed ones. This was a pool party, but from 5:30 until 10 pm, and much of the class was invited - half boys and half girls. There's apparently a 6th grade dance, and lots of rumors about who is going with whom.

wertperch and I had a cocktail with friends, and then wandered home. He and I had gotten gifts for each other, and they are pretty telling.

I have a new bike, a one speed, and except for the fact that it's blue it could be the bike ridden by the wicked witch in Wizard of Oz. I love it. Davis is totally flat, so I don't need gears, and I can step across the bar, so I can ride it wearing a skirt, and when I'm doing chemo I'd far rather ride upright. Less pressure on the brains and guts. But I've been longing for baskets - one for the front, and one for the back, (to stuff Toto into, obviously). wertperch hunted around all six of our local bike shops, and found an actual detachable wicker one for the front, with a handle and everything. It's perfect, and I did the happy dance.

For Kevin, I found this great fanny pack, made by Kelty and full of bells and whistles. It is both a butt pack and it has a shoulder strap so he can carry it as a Man Bag. THEN it ALSO unfolds into a day pack, so you can take it travelling. Two water bottle pockets. He and I are constantly searching for the perfect travelling bag, big enough to stuff souvenirs into, but no so big as to be awkward. I'm usually overloaded, and he doesn't have quite enough room in any bag, although he prefers to travel light. But the contrast cracked me up - very high tech, and very elegant low tech. (Although the low tech basket has a snazzy plastic clip to attach it to the front of the bike. Higher tech than it looks...)

We ate Indian food, and then settled down to watch a silly movie. I made it about half an hour, and then realized what I really wanted to do was curl up with my book and pretend to read. So that is what we did. We actually went out the night before and ate the original huge mound of Indian food, and that was our anniversary date. The imp came along, because really wertperch married into a family, so we always include her in the anniversary do.

So that was the anniversary. I'm still bald, or bald again, just like the day we were married, and I fall asleep at 8 pm.

Another good piece of news is that I might not have to do twelve rounds of chemo. I've done six, and we can tell I'm responding because there's a lymph node above my right clavicle that I can feel, and it's getting smaller. Presuming everything else is responding this well, we'll do a PET scan, and I might be able to take a break after nine. That would be GREAT, since the chemo is wreaking havoc with not just my joints and my vanity, but my poor digestive system. Haven't lost a lot of weight, but it's creeping down, and the side effects definitely increase over the course of chemo.

So that's our news. All my love,

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